Drip pans for stoves rank among the toughest cleaning jobs in the kitchen.
Grime on aluminum burner pans, which fit under the electric coils on your range, often seemed to me to be resistant to scrubbing.
And they probably are, if you’re using regular cleaners and scrubbers.
But my two tricks for cleaning drip pans — one for weekly cleaning and one for deeper cleaning — will keep them looking new and thus, keep you from replacing them so often!
Bonus: Clean drip pans for your electric stove don’t just serve cosmetic purposes; keeping the surface reflective ensures the most efficient use of heat, meaning you’ll use less energy when you keep your burners and drip pans clean.
Spot cleaning burner pans
For day to day drips and stains, make sure the burner’s completely cooled and pull it up and out from the stove top (see photo below). I usually remove the drip pan to my sink to avoid peripheral messes. Wet the drip pan and sprinkle on a liberal amount of my co-favorite household cleaner, Bar Keeper’s Friend (name the other in the comments for a gold star). Use a rag to work the cleaner into a paste and polish off the mess. Rinse and dry thoroughly before replacing the pans.
Deep cleaning drip pans
Pick a time when you don’t need to use your sink or stove for several hours, like right before bed or work. Again, wait until the stove is cool and remove the burners. Put each burner pan in separate gallon plastic bags. Add 1/4 cup of ammonia to each and fill the remainder with hot tap water. Close the bags and let them sit overnight (or for several hours).
Then, drain the bags and scrub off the loosened mess. Rinse well before applying any other cleaners, as ammonia can create toxic fumes when mixed. Rinse and dry thoroughly before replacing.
Let me know if you try this and how it worked for you!